Rust 1.1 speeds compiling, adds new APIs

The new version is 32 percent faster in compilation time, while the version 1.2 beta supports Microsoft's Visual C

The open source Rust systems language, developed by Mozilla Research with an emphasis on speed and thread safety, has been upgraded with a 1.1 release highlighted by improved compilation.

In a recent blog post, the Rust Core Team cited compile times as a priority after the May release of Rust 1.0. "Thanks to the hard work of a number of contributors, Rust 1.1 stable provides a 32 percent improvement in compilation time of Rust 1.0  (as measured by bootstrapping)." Compiler error messages now feature extended explanations, and type-checking performance has been improved as well.

Version 1.1 also features new std.::fs APIs, thus stabilizing extensions to the file system APIs. Developers can build a package via the Cargo package manager while passing arbitrary flags to the rustc invocation, and support for musl, a library for powering Linux devices, is featured as well. Also in the library realm, new extension traits on Windows and Unix support conversion of I/O types to and from underlying system handles.

The Rust team also detailed  the version 1.2 beta release, which has additional compilation boosts and performance improvements to Cargo. First support for Microsoft's Visual C, the native tool chain on Windows for building and linking C and C++ programs, also is featured. "This is a big step for our Windows support, making it much easier to link Rust code against code built using the native tool chain," the team said. Thusly, it will be easier to plug together Rust libraries with code built on other tools on Windows.

A stable version of Rust 1.2 is due in about six weeks, along with a beta of Rust 1.3.

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